Hibiscus is a flowering plant that includes hundreds of different types. Native to India and Malaysia, hibiscus is commonly found in these forms.
Hibiscus is found in a variety of different drinks, and hibiscus tea can be made either by steeping tea bags into boiling water or steeping dried hibiscus buds.
Powdered forms of hibiscus are also available, and they are made from plant parts that have been dried and finely ground. The powder can be mixed with water to make a great beverage.
Concentrated forms of hibiscus, known as extracts, are available from herbal supplement retailers and some commercial retailers.
5 Reasons to Drink
Beverages with hibiscus can be quite delicious, and the best hibiscus drinks are the ones with natural ingredients. Beyond taste, there are other reasons to drink it.
Hibiscus tea is rich in antioxidants, which are molecules that can help fight negative compounds that can cause damage to cells.
The consumption of antioxidants can have the following effects:
- Improve heart health
- Improve vision
- Reduce inflammation
- Anti-aging in skin
- Improved gut health
Blood pressure is the pressure of the blood within the body pushing against the walls of an artery, which carries blood to and from the heart and to other parts of the body. Blood pressure naturally rises and falls during the day, and it is measured using two numbers: systolic blood pressure, which measures the pressure within arteries when the heart is beating, and diastolic blood pressure, which measures the pressure within the arteries when the heart is resting between beats. High blood pressure, also referred to as hypertension, can increase the risk of heart attack, heart disease, and stroke.
Over time, high blood pressure can strain the heart and weaken it, but studies involving hibiscus tea have shown that hibiscus can help lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure. In a study where participants were given hibiscus tea or a placebo, those who had hibiscus tea had a very significant decrease in their systolic blood pressure compared to the placebo.
Blood Fat Levels
Our bodies need certain levels of fat to be healthy and function properly, but too much fat can be an issue. High blood fat levels can cause the fat to build up in the walls of blood vessels, which can ultimately plug arteries and prevent blood flow; any artery can be blocked, even the ones going to your heart. Once these arteries are blocked, the risk of having a stroke is increased. High levels of fat can lead to poor circulation, kidney disease, heart disease, and stroke.
However, hibiscus has been shown to help lower blood fat levels. In one study, 60 individuals who have diabetes were given either hibiscus tea or black tea; after a month, the participants who were given hibiscus tea had lower blood fat levels compared to those given black tea.
The liver is not only the body’s largest solid organ, but it has many different functions that benefit our health. The liver filters out poisonous substances, like alcohol, and filters all of the blood in the body. It is also responsible for producing bile, which is the fluid that helps to digest fats and carry waste away. The liver performs more than 500 functions that are vital to the normal function of our bodies. When our liver is damaged or not working properly, it can be harmful to our health and result in various diseases.
Research involving hibiscus and the liver has found that hibiscus can promote liver health and help it work efficiently. In one study with 19 overweight people, the participants were given hibiscus extract to take for 12 weeks. At the end of the study, it was discovered that the hibiscus extracts improved liver steatosis, which is a condition where excess fat begins to build up within the liver- this can lead to liver failure and death.
Bacteria and Inflammation
While some bacteria are naturally present within our bodies, some bacteria can cause infections like bronchitis, urinary tract infections, and pneumonia. We come in contact with these bacteria on everyday surfaces and through interaction with other people, so exposure is unavoidable. However, hibiscus has been found to have the potential to fight bacterial infections. And one study regarding test tubes, the hibiscus stopped the activity of E. coli, which is a bacteria that can cause gas, diarrhea, and cramping.
Inflammation within our bodies can be caused by many things, and it plays a role in the development of different illnesses like asthma, arthritis, and heart disease. Hibiscus has anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown through studies to have the ability to fight inflammation.
Hibiscus is safe to use and can provide great health benefits when consumed, and it is very easy to incorporate into a diet.